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Takeaway Britain

Brits Will Spend An Estimated £10.6bn On Takeaways In 2019

Britain is a nation of takeaway lovers. Since 2016 the average spend per week on takeaway meals eaten at home has risen by 8.5%, from £4.70 to £5.10. There’s also been an increase in fast food outlets across the UK. It’s up by 34% between 2010 to 2018. With takeaway food such a firm favourite, it’s now estimated that Brit’s will spend £10.6 billion on them this year.  

But what dish do you prefer? Does the nation have a favourite? And if you could choose all your favourite dishes from each type of takeaway to create your ideal meal, what would that look like? Well of course, we had to find out.

tombola surveyed the British public to find out more about our takeaway habits and these are the results.

Chinese Is The Nation’s Favourite Takeaway

The most popular takeaway dish was Chinese, with 37% of the votes. As a nation we spend on average £9.86 per Chinese takeaway, per person - more than any other takeaway cuisine.

An Indian takeaway came in second place with 30% and fish and chips third with 19%.

The Nation’s ‘Ideal’ Takeaway Meal

tombola’s research showed that a perfect takeaway is more than just your favourite main dish. When asked about starters, mains, sides, drinks and desserts, the ideal combination is not entirely what you’d expect. In fact, almost a third (31%) of our respondents said they would prefer no starter at all. Maybe they need more room for dessert!

Brits chose the following combination as their ideal meal. Would you sit down to this meal?


31% prefer no starter


34% prefer a Chinese dish such as Chicken Chow Mein.

Side dish

37% chose Poppadoms as their favourite side dish


35% went for Ice Cream as their winning dessert


34% want Fizzy Pop to wash it all down with.

britain's perfect takeaway meal

The UK’s Best And Worst Takeaway Dishes

Different dishes however, proved more desirable than others. We categorised each dish from most loved (elite) to least loved, (barrel scraping) to give us the best and worst takeaway dishes.

uks best and worst takeaway dishes

*Starters, mains, sides, desserts and drinks voted for by the British public.

29% Of Brits Struggle To Make A Decision When Ordering A Takeaway

Is there anything more polarising than a food debate? What to order from the takeaway and how? Online? Over the phone? Who takes charge? Do you order separate dishes or lots to share? Well, it turns out that 29% of Brits are indecisive when placing an order, which could cause a number of arguments with the 71% that know exactly what they want.

55% take the role of ‘chief organiser’. For the 49% who prefer to experience a takeaway with family and friends, this could be quite a job!

45% Of Brits Hate Sharing Their Takeaway

Whether or not you share your food is a very personal choice. Some people don’t mind it, for others it provokes rage. tombola’s study reports that 55% of Brits love sharing their takeaway, with 45% hating it.

Would you sit down to the nation’s ideal takeaway? And do you agree with the best and worst takeaway dishes?

Luckily, with the advent of food delivery apps, we now have hundreds of options at our fingertips. So, you can make your own ‘ideal takeaway’ with any dishes you choose. Winner winner, takeaway dinner!